The Authenticity Advantage
Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
@TalentAnarchy
@JasonLauritsen
@JoeGerstandt
A 15 Min...
We Build Cultures that
Fuel Innovation.
1. what
2. why
3. how
WHAT
buzzword alert!
au·then·tic
[aw-then-tik]  adjective
1.not false or copied; genuine; 
2.having the origin supported by unqu
estionable evi...
Authenticity is not a buzzword.
It is not SIMPLE.
It is not SAFE.
It is not COMMON.
It is a SUPERPOWER.
FLY YOUR FREAK FLAGFREAK FLAG
• Outlier
• Odd ball
• Weirdo
• Deviant
• Out on a limb
• Crazy
WHY
1.Be Happy.
2.Be Smart (together).
3.Be Creative.
4.Be Connected.
Be happy.
There can be no
happiness if the
things we believe in
are different from
the things we do.
-Freya Stark
Be on a Smart Team.
Groups often fail to outperform
individuals because they
prematurely move to
consensus, with dissenting
opinions being sup...
Be creative.
Be connected.
SOCIAL CAPITAL
- information
- ideas
- business leads
- goodwill
- trust
- cooperation
resources available to an individua...
1.Be Happy.
2.Be Smart (together).
3.Be Creative.
4.Be Connected.
HOW
DARING
AWARENESS
INTEGRITY
AUTHENTICITY
ACCEPTANCE
AWARENESS
Finding clarity on
who you are and
who you wish to be.
Who are you?
What are you here for?
What is your gift?
ACCEPTANCE
Coming to terms with
who you are, declaring it
to the world, and reveling
in it.
INTEGRITY
Aligning what you do
with what you
believe.
DARING
Continuing to gather
new awareness of
your capabilities
through adventure
DARING
AWARENESS
INTEGRITY
AUTHENTICITY
ACCEPTANCE
How will you help others?
A workforce that is:
•Happy
•Smart
•Creative
•Connected
GET CONNECTED
talentanarchy.com
twitter.com/TalentAnarchy
JASON LAURITSEN
jason@talentanarchy.com
twitter.com/jasonlaurits...
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers
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The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers

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We talk a good game about authenticity. We have even turned it into a buzzword recently. But authenticity in the workplace is hard fought and pretty rare. The truth is that organizations are inherently conformist and traditional management practices further prioritize conformity. Too much conformity can easily lead to poor decision making, lackluster performance, and a lack of innovation.

Jason Lauritsen and Joe Gerstandt, co-founders of Talent Anarchy, presented this straight to the point, 15-minute webinar to show you how to use authenticity to your advantage. They provide you with a good launch pad for reducing group think and increasing the individual contributions of your employees.

You can find a recording of the webinar here: http://youtu.be/JAYHpjJa3Rg?t=14s

www.TalentAnarchy.com

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  • You have likely heard this word quite a bit lately. It seems that we have done ourselves a great disservice with this idea, we have turned it into a buzzword and we toss the word around casually like it is a simple and safe and common thing. We do not think that it is a simple or a common thing and we are hoping to take the word back, because it is a pretty important word. Not only is it important, we believe that authenticity can be your secret weapon, your superpower.
  • We often talk about “flying your freak flag,” rather than simply saying be authentic to remind people that it is an activist thing. If you are being true to who you are, then there will be times when you are the fly in the ointment, the outlier, the weirdo…being authentic requires that we are willing to play that role. And this is why authenticity is hard. The desire to fit in, to belong, to be a part of, is a pretty powerful drive for us humans. This is a big part of why we sometimes keep our ideas and our questions to ourselves.  When was the last time that you were the oddball? When was the last time that you were in the minority?
  • Authenticity does not mean being different for the sake of being different. It does not mean that you have to be tattooed or pierced or dyed or that you have to live in Austin and play the ukulele. It is going to look differently for every single one of us, as it means being true to who you are…it is about having some real clarity about who you are and acting accordingly.
  • ONE For starters, authenticity makes it easier for you to be happy and whole in at work, and this is one of those things that might sound touch feely, but happiness is no joke. Happiness matters. Happiness is a real thing, an important thing that influences how I feel about my work and how I apply myself to my work, happiness impacts how my brain operations, so I should want some happiness in my work and I should want the same for the folks around me.
  • TWO Most of us work as part of a group or a team, and authenticity is critically important here as well. Groupthink is incredibly common at work and it reduces our capacity for good decision making, problem solving, innovation and learning as groups. Authenticity is what saves us from groputhink, because it is only when the individual members stop thinking for themselves, groups start to lose their ways and fail to aggregate the resources that they have access to. *
  • Abilene paradox.
  • Want to be a part of smart team? It is not likely to happen without authenticity. The average intelligence of the members of a group is not an accurate indicator of the groups performance when it comes to decision making and problem solving, neither is the intelligence of the smartest member. What is a good indicator? The ability to think both divergently and convergently, the ability to candicly and openly disagree with each other prior to making a decision. You can play a critical role in helping your peers, your team, your organization avoid the danger of groupthink by staying true to yourself, by speaking up, asking questions and supporting your peers in doing the same…its not always easy or fun, but it is incredibly valuable.
  • Authenticity fuels creativity. With innovation of increasing importance, finding ways to help employees be more creative is critical. And there still seems to be this idea in place that certain kinds of people are creative. Rubbish. *
  • Each individual is inherently creative. We may not all be famous for the works of art that we create, but there are many ways to be creative. It might show up in how we communicate, or how we dress or how we solve problems. Each of is a unique being and a unique bundle of experiences. We see things and experience things in unique ways. To fuel more creativity, we need to find more ways to encourage employees to express themselves and create an evironment where this is the norm.
  • We live in a hyper connected world where the quality of your network has a huge impact on the size of your impact. *
  • This value is called Social capital. It is the resources, relationships, information and opportunity that you can have access to through your network of relationships with others. Authenticity is a magnet for social capital. Being true to who you are, being a unique and memorable person attracts others to you and makes you memorable. Instead of being just another person I have met, being authentic puts you in a category of one.
  • We hope that you’ve come to the conclusion at this point that cultivating authenticity is a powerful way for leaders to unleash greater performance, innovation and engagement.
  • But knowing and doing are two different things. So, now we turn our attention to the process for cultivating authenticity.
  • Personal authenticity is the result of an ongoing process with four steps. For someone just being the journey, it starts with self-awareness and if followed by self-acceptance. It’s one thing to know who you are, it’s another thing to embrace it. Then, there is the integrity of making sure your actions are in alignment with who you are. And finally, there is daring which is where we learn more about ourselves to provide new data into the process. Let’s talk briefly about each of these steps so that you can reflect on how you could facilitate this process for yourself and others.
  • The process starts with awareness. We must help people find clarity about who they are and who they are trying to become. This is heavy work. It involves confronting some really important questions about values and intentions. It also reveals blind spots. Awareness is a very personal journey. To help people on this process requires providing tools (like assessments and exercises), support (may in the form of training or coaching) and encouragement. Awareness, when done right, yields powerful and sometimes unexpected insights. People need to be supported in this process. At one point in my career, I was given the feedback that I was dressing like a slob to come to work. This was important feedback, particularly in light of my desire to move up into management at the company. The feedback was hard to hear, but it was important for me to become aware that my choice of clothing was impacting my career prospects. Self-awareness isn’t a new concept. Many of you have programs for this in your leadership develop programs. But, awareness alone isn’t enough.
  • The second phase of the process towards authenticity is self-acceptance. When we dig deep on self-aware awareness, individuals discover things about themselves that they like and some that they don’t like. To fuel acceptance involves supporting people in coming to terms with this new information. Ultimately, it’s about helping them see how to accentuate the things they love about themselves and how to confront the things they don’t. In my earlier example about how I dressed, I could have decided to ignore that feedback forcing them to make a decision about promoting me inspite of it. I could have embraced the way I dressed as part of who I was. But, that’s not what I did. I wasn’t being intentional about how I dressed, so I decided to make a change to align how I dressed for work with my career aspirations. Ultimately, acceptance is about taking ownership of who you are and deciding to live appropriately.
  • The third step in the process is integrity. This is where the rubber meets the road for authenticity. Once you know who you are and have accepted that, integrity demands that your actions align with those intentions. The big question at this stage is: Are you providing evidence to the world and those around you of who you are really are? Is where flying our freak flags becomes challenging at times? What if how I really am doesn’t fit in with how others want me to be? What if it makes me the odd ball or the weirdo? To support this part of the process involves helping individuals build a support system of people who encourage their journey and expect integrity. This involves finding accountability partners who provide honest feedback and wingmen who provide support and encouragement. The path of authenticity will meet resistance, and to help people on this path means that we must prepare them for it.
  • The final step of individual authenticity is daring. Daring requires that we step outside our comfort zones to try new things through experimentation and adventure. These new experiences expand our sense of possibility and challenge what we assume to be our assumptions. When we try new things, we learn about ourselves. If you’ve never run a marathon, but you sign up and do it. You learn a lot about your capabilities as a runner. You might discover you are capable of things you never thought possible. You may also discover you really hate marathons. Either way, you learn. Daring is not natural for most people, particularly in a work setting. So, as we help peope through this process, we can encourage and place them in situations that are new and uncomfortable as a matter of process. Have them work on new projects with new people. Send them on a work trip to somewhere they’ve never been. All of this fuels learning that feeds back into our sense of self awareness.
  • So, this is the process for developing personal authenticity. It works with people of any level, age or sophistication. But, it doesn’t end here.
  • To truly benefit from the power of authenticity in your organization, you must go one step beyond the cultivation of individual authenticity. To be a true freak flag flier, you not only need to fly your own flag, but you must advocate and defend others in doing the same. We call this inclusion. If there aren’t people around you that make you a little uncomfortable because of their own freak flag, then it’s not working yet.
  • Freak flags are fun to talk about. But this isn’t a feel good seminar. Freak flags are critical to business. Cultivating the authenticity of your employees holds the potential for enormous competitive advantage. Who doesn’t want a happy, smart, creative and connected workforce?
  • But, this wont’ be easy. Authenticity is a concept that most say they value, but few are truly investing in. The question, will you have the courage to give this powerful gift to your organization and it’s employees. We hope you do. And we’d love to help you.
  • The Authenticity Advantage: Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers

    1. 1. The Authenticity Advantage Building a Workforce of Freak Flag Fliers @TalentAnarchy @JasonLauritsen @JoeGerstandt A 15 Minute Webinar #FreakFlag
    2. 2. We Build Cultures that Fuel Innovation.
    3. 3. 1. what 2. why 3. how
    4. 4. WHAT
    5. 5. buzzword alert!
    6. 6. au·then·tic [aw-then-tik]  adjective 1.not false or copied; genuine;  2.having the origin supported by unqu estionable evidence; authenticated; 
    7. 7. Authenticity is not a buzzword. It is not SIMPLE. It is not SAFE. It is not COMMON. It is a SUPERPOWER.
    8. 8. FLY YOUR FREAK FLAGFREAK FLAG • Outlier • Odd ball • Weirdo • Deviant • Out on a limb • Crazy
    9. 9. WHY
    10. 10. 1.Be Happy. 2.Be Smart (together). 3.Be Creative. 4.Be Connected.
    11. 11. Be happy.
    12. 12. There can be no happiness if the things we believe in are different from the things we do. -Freya Stark
    13. 13. Be on a Smart Team.
    14. 14. Groups often fail to outperform individuals because they prematurely move to consensus, with dissenting opinions being suppressed or dismissed. -Hackman, Morris (1975) Advances in Experimental Social Psychology
    15. 15. Be creative.
    16. 16. Be connected.
    17. 17. SOCIAL CAPITAL - information - ideas - business leads - goodwill - trust - cooperation resources available to an individual through their relationships to and connections with others: Citation: Achieving Success through Social Capital by Wayne Baker
    18. 18. 1.Be Happy. 2.Be Smart (together). 3.Be Creative. 4.Be Connected.
    19. 19. HOW
    20. 20. DARING AWARENESS INTEGRITY AUTHENTICITY ACCEPTANCE
    21. 21. AWARENESS Finding clarity on who you are and who you wish to be. Who are you? What are you here for? What is your gift?
    22. 22. ACCEPTANCE Coming to terms with who you are, declaring it to the world, and reveling in it.
    23. 23. INTEGRITY Aligning what you do with what you believe.
    24. 24. DARING Continuing to gather new awareness of your capabilities through adventure
    25. 25. DARING AWARENESS INTEGRITY AUTHENTICITY ACCEPTANCE
    26. 26. How will you help others?
    27. 27. A workforce that is: •Happy •Smart •Creative •Connected
    28. 28. GET CONNECTED talentanarchy.com twitter.com/TalentAnarchy JASON LAURITSEN jason@talentanarchy.com twitter.com/jasonlauritsen JOE GERSTANDT joe@talentanarchy.com twitter.com/joegerstandt

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